POMONA — A jury convicted two men Thursday of robbing an El Monte business, then shooting a good Samaritan who intervened when they tried to rob an elderly woman of her dog in Arcadia.
Kekai Larsen, 27, and Joseph Duran, 24, both of Los Angeles, were convicted of robbery, attempted robbery, burglary and assault with a deadly weapon, court and police officials said, along with the special allegations of using and firing a gun and causing great bodily injury to a victim.
Larsen and Duran tried to steal an air compressor April 6 of last year from a business in the 9900 block of Gidley Street in El Monte, El Monte police Detective Ralph Batres said.
The business owner heard the commotion and came out to confront the thieves when they brandished a handgun and demanded his wallet, the detective said. Duran then ransacked the business for valuables.
From there, Batres said, Larsen and Duran headed to Arcadia, where they tried to rob an elderly woman of her small dog.
An Arcadia man of about 40 years old tried to help the woman when Larsen leaned out of the getaway car and shot him in the leg, police said. Both attackers then fled.
Based on license plate information garnered during the El Monte robbery, police were waiting at an Alhambra home when the car that was involved in the crimes arrived, Batres said. Larsen and Duran were not inside.
Police pulled over the car and soon learned that Larsen and Duran were at a motel in Rosemead, Batres said. They were arrested without incident, though the handgun was not recovered.
Larsen face the possibility of life in prison, and Duran faces up to 12 years behind bars when they return to Pomona Superior Court April 7 for sentencing, officials said.